Biggest Marathon In Fifteen Years
For a long time on the World Sankirtan Newsletter, the Texas Krishnas have endured being beaten by the three brahmacharis of the Madrid temple. But in December 2014 that began to change.
At the beginning of the month I saw our temple president, Nityananda Prabhu, helping to load a set of Srila Prabhupada's books that he had just sold into a car that belonged to one Raymond. It was nice to see an American buying a set, rather than just Indian families who had already donated the laxmi anyway. Nityananda wants every respectable person in Dallas to buy a set of books.
I could tell, from that auspicious beginning, that the Prabhupada marathon was going to go well.
Gauranga Prema came to Texas from China to do book distribution. The Chinese government once put him into a gulag to be tortured for a month for doing book distribution. He was happy to have the freedom to do sankirtan here. We arrived at some shops and met lots of nice people. One Muslim from Pakistan said that he could not read books from other religions, but I told him it is a science, and I spoke to him in the little Urdu I know. He changed his stance and gave a few dollars for The Nectar of Instruction.
We approached a Mexican family. Surprisingly, the nine-year-old daughter was studying Chinese. She and Gauranga Prema talked in it, and they bought a book. Then the family recited the Hare Krishna maha-mantra. We also gave them flower garlands from Sri Sri Radha-Kalachandji.
Gauranga Prema Prabhu was a ball of fire throughout the month. Every morning after mangal-arati he would tell me something like “I had a good day yesterday: 20 Gitas and 40 small books."
One day he and Narottamananda Prabhu set up a table at a shopping mall and met a High Court district judge, Her Honor Theresa Hawthorne. She liked hearing about the Vaisnava community and gave $20 for a Bhagavad-gita.
Pravin Prabhu lives with his wife and small child in an apartment complex. They are from Nepal, and a lot of Nepalese live in his neighborhood. On a cold Saturday morning, members of six families came to Pravin's apartment to go door-to-door. First, they chanted a round of japa and danced to a robust Hare Krishna kirtan. Then the families split into three groups, each with a Nepali on the team.
Three houses of Nepali people bought Gitas and Krishna books. Also, a Puerto Rican man bought a Gita, and an elderly black lady bought a "Journey to Self Discovery." All the devotees returned to Pravin's place happy with their sankirtan experience. Abhay, age thirteen, was excited to have sold a book to a Mexican who objected on the basis that he is a Catholic. Abhay showed him the pictures and changed his mind. Altogether eleven houses bought Srila Prabhupada's books (with $108 donated). They worked together again a week later and doubled it with twenty-four houses buying books.
Radha-Kalachandji's sankirtan leader, Achutya Govinda Prabhu, learned about book distribution in Colorado from Mother Nidra. Now he lives in Dallas, and this season he set up book tables, arranged the door-to-door, and went out himself.
At the end of the month the results of his efforts combined with those all the devotees was announced by our temple president.: “Radha-Kalachandji Dhama has had its biggest marathon in over fifteen years.”
Mishra Bhagavan Dasa
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